Higher Order Thinking Skills In Mathematical Problem Solving

Mr Mohd Suhaimi Ramly
Head Coach of Malaysian International Mathematical Olympiad Team

Workshop Synopsis

The presentation introduces a practical method for teaching mathematical problem solving in a classroom based on the Polya problem solving model (understand -> plan -> execute -> reflect). A proper implementation of Polya model in classroom can help to develop mathematical abilities at the higher order of Bloom's Taxonomy, namely analyzing, evaluating and creating. In a workshop setting, we will discuss some sample problems and how to present them in a classroom so that students discover the joy of solving the problems themselves, rather than being fed the solution by their teacher. We follow the maxim of Polya: "It is better to solve one problem five different ways, than to solve five problems one way."